Do You Need An Emotional Detox? What Can Actually Help?
Toxins in your physical body and your emotional "body" are often linked. I hear often how when someone goes through the detox process, they start feeling a bunch of sad, angry or painful feelings as well. I have also experienced this myself, it is, I feel, imperative to the self-growth path.
Improved physical states are linked with better emotional health, it seems the opposite may be true as well.
Research at the University of Pittsburgh shows that when researchers studied 680 women with chest pain found those who held on to feelings of anger were four times more likely to have unhealthy cholesterol levels and higher body mass index than those who did not, both of these factors are linked to heart disease.
Cleansing your body may bring old emotional scars to the surface, which may be why you overate, self-medicated or indulged in junk food to begin with, to numb the pain.
Want to find out how to break the cycle and release these toxic emotions?
The biggest factor in breaking the toxic emotional cycle is awareness. Becoming aware of your emotions and being able to feel them without over reacting (sometimes much easier said than done!) is the key to moving through intense emotional times.
John Gray, expert in relationships, talks about feeling our emotional "soup pot" and being able to identify which feeling is bothering you and letting them be felt. Most of us are very afraid to feel our own emotions because we don't trust ourselves and our own reactions, we are afraid we will act on them, maybe irrationally. This comes from authority figures over controlling our feelings during most of our life and learning we shouldn't be trusted with our own emotions.
This is why most people choose to repress feelings, we disconnect and stuff them away. Dr.Gray actually says the truth is exactly the opposite, that feeling the feels causes us NOT to act or over react (as in these Doritos have met their match act) to our emotional states. Feeling our feelings causes them to just go away.
The most recommended tool I have found and also the most effective for releasing stuck emotions is meditation, for as little as 5 minutes per day or whenever needed it, can powerfully change any state. Just by closing your eyes and bringing awareness to the fact that you aren't your current feelings, allows you to feel them and let them pass. I find this particularly effective while showering or bathing. There are many different ways to meditate, google a couple and see what works for you. You may hate one method but love another. There is no right way.
Aromatherapy is also a powerful way to release and soothe stored emotions; releasing is made easier with eucalyptus oil, breathing through intense emotion is aided by the King of oils- Frankincense, Forgiveness is aided by Helichrysum, deepen your acceptance of circumstances with Roman Chamomile and increase self-love with Bergamot. Always remember to dilute topical oils with a carrier oil to avoid injury.
Herbal teas are similar in that they release the volatile oil in the leaves and soothe you internally, my recommendations go to chamomile, peppermint, lemon balm, green tea and passion flower.
Yoga and deep stretching can also help release toxic emotions and aid physical detox, as can infrared sauna and hydrotherapy, where hot and cold waters are intermittently applied to the body to draw out heat and toxins.
Sometimes periods of silence can help, other times sound bathing with music can also help. If you are going to start a detox program, be aware that deep emotions may surface and need to be dealt with. If you have experienced trauma you may need a professional to help guide you through, that's one of the bravest things you can do.